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Thread: David Paulides Missing 411

  1. #1
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    David Paulides Missing 411

    Since we are all grown-ups here, some with an amazing lot of wilderness experience, what do you think about the "Missing 411" books/reports by David Paulides?

    Assuming the reports are credible, even more unnerving than the crazy child cases are the hunter cases. People armed with high power rifles vanish without ever firing one shot - some more or less in front of their friends...

    Do you discount these reports for your personal life or do those black swan incidents motivate you to take extra precautions?

    Planed to go hiking some lesser known trails in the western states with some friends with children, but really not so sure now.

    Thanks for any input!

    PS: Podcast on the subject:
    https://podcasts.apple.com/lv/podcas...=1000390223875

  2. #2
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    For me, his arrest for fraud eliminates any credibility.
    "Knowledge is good." Emil Faber, date unknown.

  3. #3
    Site Supporter ST911's Avatar
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    There are a lot of ways to disappear in the backcountry, and tech/dogs/search ops/etc aren't television. You don't have to be far off the road to be gone for good if you fell in the wrong spot or the critters had access to you. And as nature reclaims us, remains are really easy to miss even if you're standing beside them.
    الدهون القاع الفتيات لك جعل العالم هزاز جولة الذهاب

  4. #4
    Site Supporter Crazy Dane's Avatar
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    `In Idaho, I came close to stepping in a fissure in the lava bed. I was hunting sage hens west of Blackfoot and I pushed through some tall sage brush and came inches from going in. The fissure was only a couple of feet wide and ran for 60 feet or so, its deepest was probably 30 feet. Looking down into it I could see bones from small animals and maybe even a deer. Stupid mistake of pushing through the sage instead of walking around it.

    Elk hunting in Colorado, I jumped a creek and went thigh deep in soft mud. That happened when I was young and able and if I did that now there would be no way I could struggle out of that. Stupid mistake of jumping the creek instead of finding a better crossing. Note, 60 yards up stream I could have walked across and note even got the top of my boots wet.

    Here in WNC, at the bottom of an almost seer rock face I found a pair of boots and a pack, and this stuff had been there for a while. The pack had fly fishing gear, water bottle still full, couple of granola bars and what appeared to be a sandwich. I got to looking around and could see something shining at the top of the rock face, maybe 120 feet up. I made my way up there and found a fly rod hung up in the bushes. The weird part of this is that it was miles from any fishable water. I reported it to the wardens and ended up taking one in. They said that there was no one reported missing in that area and the items didn't match up with any other cases. I still have the fly rod, they gave me the stuff after the investigation.


    My best advice, go forth and explore, don't do stupid stuff, and be prepared.

  5. #5
    42 years of doing SAR here, and my advice is to make sensible preparations and then go out and enjoy yourself.

    When the remains of long-disappeared people are found, they're usually in places that are just plain hard to find bodies in. SAR is much harder than the public thinks it is. No matter how many resources we pour into an area and how good many of the searchers are, the Probability of Detection (POD) is never 100%. There are two missing in Yosemite National Park from last Summer in spite of heavily resourced searches. Some people just aren't going to be found during the formal search. Many of them are eventually found by hunters or rock hounds, or other enthusiasts who spend time off trail in hard country.

    Remember that the back country is a lot bigger than it looks from the road. Once you get out there, you can appreciate how easy it is for someone to disappear. Strange doings aren't needed. Even if we had unlimited time and resources, we would still miss a few of them just because of the sheer scale of the possible places to fall into or off. And some jurisdictions don't have the resources to launch extensive SAR operations for long periods of time.

  6. #6
    Quote Originally Posted by Jason M View Post
    For me, his arrest for fraud eliminates any credibility.
    Everybody makes mistakes, to me it doesn't automatically eliminate credibility but I can certainly say there is some degree of lack of integrity from seeing what happened there. Maybe he got in a hard way and just needed the cash, which can happen to anybody and people often do what they must to make ends meet when their back is against the wall.

  7. #7
    Also worth noting, almost all of these cases are public record and he's claiming to do nothing but present the collected evidence from the cases. I'm not seeing the fraud HERE, if that is anybody's concern because you could easily verify all of this in large part.

  8. #8
    He’s cool to listen to, but as people have stated, when it gets real in the back country, it gets real fast. Most of these cases have far more mundane explanations.

    Why close to national parks? Because it’s a massive intersection of unprepared people and nature. Same for the clusters near cities. Most people simply are not prepared for what can happen in the wilderness, even a few hundred yards off a trail.

    Even relatively experienced trail hikers and backpackers can become easily lost once they step off a known path. Land navigation skills are seriously lacking even in people I know who are “avid” outdoorsie types.

    Most urbanites also don’t pack enough water or water filtration equipment either. Take a look at the case where the family died of heat stroke in CA recently. Nor do people understand how varied weather can be between elevations, and how quickly it can change.

    Still, it’s fun to imagine big foot running around out there abducting people. If that’s your thing, check out Devolution by Max Brooks.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

  9. #9
    Member Hambo's Avatar
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    People disappear around here all the time, and it's not back country. In fact, it's fairly common that people disappear with their car. They drive into a canal and nobody sees it, then years later the car gets found in some other search.

    I have a Garmin that will text via satellite, I try not to do stupid things, and I have no fear of wild areas.
    Hambo's Original E-Burger, home of the 5G Energy Burger!

  10. #10
    Site Supporter feudist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Coyote41 View Post
    He’s cool to listen to, but as people have stated, when it gets real in the back country, it gets real fast. Most of these cases have far more mundane explanations.

    Why close to national parks? Because it’s a massive intersection of unprepared people and nature. Same for the clusters near cities. Most people simply are not prepared for what can happen in the wilderness, even a few hundred yards off a trail.

    Even relatively experienced trail hikers and backpackers can become easily lost once they step off a known path. Land navigation skills are seriously lacking even in people I know who are “avid” outdoorsie types.

    Most urbanites also don’t pack enough water or water filtration equipment either. Take a look at the case where the family died of heat stroke in CA recently. Nor do people understand how varied weather can be between elevations, and how quickly it can change.

    Still, it’s fun to imagine big foot running around out there abducting people. If that’s your thing, check out Devolution by Max Brooks.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    Land nav is so difficult that the Army uses it to screen candidates for Special Operations Forces. Lots of people just never get it.

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